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US-expat trainer Jerry Riordan won two on Saturday's superb card at Aby, Sweden and recorded a second place finish. Radysin America (4f Donato Hanover-Zagabria Dei-Victory Dream) took the Bertil Knutssons Trot over 1640 meters autostart in a sharp 1.11.8kr. Johnny Takter drove this one for owner Lisa Riordan to earn 80,000SEK first money. The half-sister to retired international star Lisa America, also developed and campaigned by Riordan, was bred in Italy by Guida Italia SRL and this was her seventh career win in 18 starts, now for 370,135SEK. The time was also her lifetime best and she survived a four-horse photo to win over Britt Palema (5f Adams Hall-Rapidsland Glare-Southwind Pinnacle) with trainer/driver Fredrik Persson, Sandra Volo (5f Cantab Hall-Sandra Victory-Valley Victory) and Orjan Kihlstrom and Pin Kronos (5f Cantab Hall-Luck Of the Day-Mr. Lavec) that was fourth for Johan Untersteiner. Riordan also had a training win with Sylvester America (3m Varenne-Armbro Voice-Garland Lobell) in the Euro Classic Next Year for three-year-olds worth 50,000SEK to the winner. He scored in a photo timed in 1.15.2kr over 2140 meters autostart with Johan Untersteiner up. Lisa Riordan also owns this colt that was bred in Italy by Guida Italia SRL. Sylvester won for third time in nine starts. Fabuleux BR was second for trainer/driver Veijo Heiskanen. As previously reported, Riordan's trainee Rare Wise As (4f Varenne-In Wise As-SJ's Caviar) was second in a three-horse photo in a fast-class four year-old mares event timed in 1.13.6kr. This mare, also owned by Lisa Riordan, was handled by Linda Allercrantz. The race was won by My Gliding Angel (4f Yankee Glide-My Shooting Star-Malabar Man) trained and driven by Bjorn Goop for Stall Kennys, her seventh win in16 tries and she earned 80,000SEK, with favored Backfire home third for Johnny Takter. The Aby card also showcased the Bronze Division Final for 200,000SEK to the winner, and it went to Royal Fighter (6m Varenne-Froken Julie-Supergill) in gate to wire fashion over 2140 meters autostart. Jennifer Tillman drover the winner, trained by Per Eriksson, that was timed in 1.12.2kr to gain his 10th win in 46 starts. The winner is owned by Per Rodert and Christina Nilsson. The opener of the day was the Aby Stora Monte Pris for 100,000SEK to the victor. The contest over 1640 meters autostart had a competitive 10 horse field and the French veteran Organdi d'Or (12g Achille-Hovillara d'Or-Vroum d'Or) emerged with the win. He's trained by rider Sofia Aronsson and scored in 1.13.2kr by two lengths for his 20th career win in 124 starts, now with 3,665,792SEK earned. He's owned in France by Armand Turquet-Lepreux. Henke Diablo with Peter Jarven aboard and Nouvelle Pelle with Asa Svensson up were next to the line. US-bred Moon Dream was fourth for Siv Emilie Lovvold and Hitchcock was a dq for rider Malin Beras. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com  

Tonight’s excellent Paris-Vincennes card featured European eligible and Gr. III action for four-year-old males and females plus the Gr. II €120,000 Prix Kalmia for three year-old colts. Brillantissime (by Ready Cash) and favorite Duke of Greenwood scored victories and Athena de Vandel won the four year-old mares contest defeating favorite Tast of Bourbon (by Donato Hanover). Coverage follows. The Gr. III Prix Heraclite (Gr. III European four year-old females, purse €80,000) went to Athena de Vandel and trainer/driver Cedric Megissier. The Prince Gede mare scored her sixth career victory in 1.14.6kr over 2700 meters raising career earnings to €190,500. The fast closing favorite Tast of Bourbon (Donato Hanover-Qualita Bourbon-Love You) just missed for Jean-Pierre Dubois after escaping traffic trouble too late in the contest. Her stablemate Alisma du Corta (by Love You) was a very competitive third for reinsman Franck Nivard. Jean Baudron trains the Dubois pair. May 20, 2014 Paris Vincennes, Prix Heraclite, Gr. III European, €80,000, females, 2700 meters, 11 starters, 1.14.6kr Athena de Vandel (4f Prince Gede-Maelia de Vandel-Coktail Jet), Cedric Megissier trainer/driver, 3.4/1, owner Ecurie La Tour de Vandel, sixth win for €190,500 earnings 1st Tast of Bourbon (4f Donato Hanover-Qualita Bourbon-Love You), Jean-Pierre Dubois driver/owner, Jean Baudron trainer, Denmark, 1.3/1 favorite, first foal of dam she a winner of 21races for €1,538,050 and third in Prix d’Amerique 2nd Alisma du Corta (4f Love You-Marquise du Corta-Vikings Way), Franck Nivard for Jean Baudron trainer, Jean-Pierre Dubois owner, 20/1 3rd Rori Axe (4f Ready Cash-Gamire Grif-Kaisy Dream), Jos. Verbeeck for trainer Philippe Allaire, 9/2, Italy 4th Mustang’s Sally (4f Quick Wood-Star Groenhof-Malabar Man), Robin Bakker up for trainer P.J.P, Hagoort, 11/1, Germany The €80,000 Gr. III Prix Camilla for four year-old males went to favorite Duke of Greenwood (4, Otello Pierji-Nikki Groenhof-Meadow Road). Peter J. Strooper trains the Germany bred campaigner and Hugo Langeweg Jr. engineered the front end victory, his fourth for earnings of €174,698. The 2700 meter course was covered in 1.15.3kr. Regio (by Varenne) and Romanesque (by Love You) trailed the winner home. May 20, 2014 Paris-Vincennes, Prix Camilla, Gr. III European males, €80,000, 2700 meters, 12 starters, 1.15.3kr 1st Duke of Greenwood (4m Otello Pierji-Nikki Grounhof-Meadow Road), Hugo Langeweg Jr. for Peter J. Strooper trainer and M. Rothengatter owner, fourth win for €174,698, 1.2/1, Germany 2nd Regio (4m Varenne-Leopardia-Muscles Yankee), 9/2 odds, Robin Bakker for P.J.P Hagoort, Italy 3rd Romanesque (4m Love You-Quantanamera-Viking Kronos), Marco Smorgon trainer/driver, 29/1, Italy 4th Ah Quel Micha  (4m Rocklyn-Oceana du Phare-Vroum d’Or), Julien Dubois up for Philippe Moulin trainer, 6.5/1 5th Arpent d’Ostel (4m Meaulnes du Corta-Quina Perrine-Buvetier d’Aunou), J-Ph. Mary trainer/driver, 16/1 The Prix Kalmia, a Gr. II event for three-year-old colts over 2175 meters went to great gaited  Brillantissime (3m Ready Cash-Ivre de Victoire-Buvetier d’Aunou) for teamster Joseph Verbeeck and trainer Philippe Allaire. The owner/breeder is Frederic Saugue of this seven time winner of €318,950. He slipped through on the inside late to score a narrow win. Another Allaire pupil Boccador de Simm (by Rieussee) was a solid second for Pierre Vercruysse with third to favorite Brutus de Bailly (by Niky) and J-M Bazire. Purse was €120,000 and winning time was 1.13kr. May 20, 2014 Paris-Vincennes, Prix Kalmia Gr. II males, €120,000, 2175 meters, 9 starters, 1.13kr 1st Brillantissime (3m Ready Cash-Ivre de Victoire-Buvetier d’Aunou),  Joseph Verbeeck up for Philippe Allaire trainer and owner/breeder F. Saugue, 2/1 odds, seventh win for €318,950 2nd Boccador de Simm (3m Rieussee-Poupee Charmeuse-Hetre Vert), Pierre Vercruysse for Philippe Allaire, 3.5/1 odds 3rd Brutus de Bailly (3m Niky-Ninon de Bailly-Carnac), J-M Bazire, 1/1 favorite 4th Bolide du Gueron (3m Cygnus d’Odyssee-Olivia-Jenko), Franck Anne trainer/driver, 42/1 5th Bixente (3m Quaker Jet-Ketty Mesloise-Blue Dream), Jean-Etienne Dubois trainer/driver,  18/1 odds The Prix Firmament for aged European eligibles went to Sweden’s Moving On (5f Quite Easy-Kings Blondie-Ride The Night) in 1.14.3kr over 2100 meters autostart. Franck Nivard drove the winner for trainer Fabrice Souloy and owner I.C. Equine AB. Moving On recorded her tenth win now for earnings of €179,966. Italy’s Plutonio (by Self Possessed) was second for Christophe Martens in this €56,000 event. May 20, 2014 Paris Vincennes, Prix Firmament, European, €56,000m 2100 meters autostart, 13 starters, 1.14.3kr 1st Moving On (5f Quite Easy-Kings Blondie-Ride The Night), Franck Nivard up for Fabrice Souloy, 7.5/1 odds, Sweden, owner I.C. Equine AB, tenth win for €179,966 2nd Plutonio (5m Self Possessed-Indra Bi-Toss Out), Christophe Martens for trainer Ake Kristofferson, 4/1 odds, Italy 3rd Vertige d’Avril (5g Historien-Katia de Mai0Uhlan de Cocherel), M. Bezier up for Pascal A. Geslin 4th Staro Foot Loose (6m Daguet Rapide-Ideal Lease-Conway Hall), Robin Bakker for trainer Arnold J. Mollema, 4.8/1, Sweden 5th Revenna (6m Legendary Lover K-Coccola Jet-Supergill), Mathieu Mottier for Fabrice Souloy trainer, 25/1, Denmark by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com

Consistent Univers de Pan (6m Kenya du Pont-Gypsilore-Pan de la Vaudere) led virtually all the way to win today's 200,000e UET Masters Series Gr. I Grand Criterium de Vitesse at Cagnes sur mer by a comfortable three lengths. Trainer/driver Philippe Daugeard teamed the favored (1.9/1 odds) winner alertly off the gate and secured the top spot when well supported Triode de Felliere went off stride in battling for the lead shortly after the start. Once on the lead Daugeard rated the pace and his 13 other rivals were unable to serve a strong challenge. Univers de Pan was timed in 1.10kr over the 1609 meter autostart course (one mile in 1:52.63). That time equaled the third fasted in race history (Varenne 1.09.6kr in 2002; Kesaco Phedo 1.09.9kr in 2004 and 1.10kr by Santa Rosa France in 2012). Italy's Pascia'Lest, with Andrea Guzzinati aboard, took the pocket and eventually ended second when he out battled the game mare Vanika du Ruel, who survived an outside journey for Franck Anne to hold third. Italy's Nesta Effe was never in the hunt and finished unplaced. Univers de Pan's victory was his 17th in a solid career and put his earnings at 1,037,530 euros. He's owned by Olivier Horvath and today secured his first Gr. I score. Univers de Pan enjoyed a good winter meet at Paris-Vincennes where he was second in the Grand Prix de France, Prix de la Marne and Prix de Belgique. He was also fifth in the Prix de Selection. Being age six, look for this one to be a factor in future Gr. I races in France and throughout Europe. He proved today that he can leave, rate and sprint home in sprinter distance contests. His pedigree is 73% French trotteur, 27% Standardbred and with a 3.8% inbreeding coefficient. March 9, 2014 Cagnes sur mer, Grand Criterium de Vitesse de la Cote d'Azur (Grand Criterium Nice-Martin), 1609 meters autostart, 14 starters, purse 200,000e, Gr. I International UET Masters Series 1.10kr (1:52.63) 1st Univers de Pan (6m Kenya du Pont-Gypsilore-Pan de la Vaudere), Philippe Daugeard trainer/driver for owner Olivier Horvath, 1.9/1 odds, his 17th career win 2nd Pascia'Lest (5m Varenne-Superiors Sun-Diamond Way), Andrea Guzzinati up for trainer Thierry Duvaldestin and owner Samuele Querci, 18/1, (Italy) 3rd Vanika du Ruel (5f Jardy-Jacarandine-Vroum d'Or), Frank Anne driver/trainer, 8.8/1 odds, earning now €1,015,350 4th Aisle Stand (7f Scarlet Knight-Twisterella-Super Arnie), 116/1 odds, Jos. Verbeeck up for trainer Ronny Kuiper, (Sweden) 5th Quoumba de Guez (10f Urfist des Pres-Vanina de Mareuil-Neron Grandchamp), J-M Bazire trainer/driver, 14/1 odds, career earnings now €1,155,569 Note that Pascia'Lest represents significant American pedigree as his dam, Superiors Sun, is a daughter of Superiors Crown (Speedy Crown-Superior Sweep-Hickory Pride). Superior Sweep won the Old Oaken Bucket, the Lady Suffolk and Kentucky Futurity. Replay of today's Gr. I event can be seen using the link below: http://www.harnesslink.com/International/ by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com  

Jean-Etienne Dubois reined 21/1 outsider Villeroi to victory in today's Gr. II 120,000e Prix Ovide Moulinet at Paris-Vincennes. The five-year old son of Oiseau des Feux scored, in 1.13.9kr over 2700 meters, his sixth career win, now for earnings of 309,590e. Dubois trains the winner that defeated the Louis Baudron trained and driven Village Mystic, a fine Love You stallion that was second choice in the wagering, and looked like a winner after he surged to the front at top-stretch. Viking de Val and notorious pacesetter Vanika du Ruel ended third and fourth respectively. Rarely do we see, in an age of specialization, a graded event in which the top four finishers were driven by their trainers. Congrats to Dubois, Baudron, Eric Lambertz and Franck Anne for excellent horsemanship. February 17, 2014 Paris-Vincennes, Gr. II Prix Ovide Moulinet, 120,000€, 2700 meters, 9 starters 1.13.9kr 1st Villeroi (5m Oiseau des Feux-Pocahontas-Defi d'Aunou), Jean-Etienne Dubois trainer/driver, 21/1, his sixth career win 2nd Village Mystic (5m Love You-Netchka d'Orgeres-Full Account), Louis Baudron trainer/driver, 2.5/1 3rd Viking de Val (5m Baccarat du Pont-La Ferge de Val-Quadrophenio), Eric Lambertz trainer/driver, 7.5/1 4th Vanika du Ruel (5f Jardy-Jacarandine-Vroum d'Or), Franck Anne trainer/driver, 1.5/1 The Quinte+ race of the day was the opener on the Vincennes card. Vodka du Wallon took the Prix de Cahors for European females, a 55,000e test over 2700 meters, in 1.14.4kr. The five year-old daughter of Onyx du Goutier won for J-M Bazire, driving for trainer Jean-M Baudouin, as she gained her sixth lifetime victory in 1.14.4kr. Pancottina Bar was a 65/1 longshot for second with Pierre Vercruysse up and that set off an exact order payoff of over 118,000e for a 2e play. February 17, 2014 Paris-Vincennes, Prix de Cahors, European females, 56,000e, 2700 meters, 18 starters, Quinte + race of the day with jackpot at 4,450,000 euros  1.14.4kr 1st Vodka du Wallon (5f Onyx du Goutier-Neige des Haueaux-Blason Clayettois), J-M Bazire for Jean-M Baudouin, 2.8/1, her sixth victory now for earnings of 120,230€ 2nd Pancottina Bar (5f Varenne-Valuta Lavec-Sugarcane Hanover), Pierre Vercruysse for trainer Claus-Ernst Hullmann, 65/1, Italy 3rd Vendetta (5f Quaro-Oland-Hand du Vivier), driver Anthony Barrier at 42/1 On the same program, Italian invader Olympic Kronos took the 55,000e Prix de Bracieux for European males over 2700 meters. The Lutfi Kolgjini trainee scored easily in 1.14.3kr for reinaman Dominik Locqueneux. The six year-old son of Viking Kronos-Ebony Kronos-Pine Chip won the the 13th time in his career, now with increased earnings to 128,784e. Undici and favored Berry's Boy fromn Holland were next to the line February 17, 2014, Paris-Vincennes, Prix de Bracieux, European males, 55,000e, 2700 meters, 14 starters 1st Olympic Kronos (6m Viking Kronos-Ebony Kronos-Pine Chip), Dominik Locqueneux up for Lutfi Kolgjini, 5.4/1 (Italy), now 13 career wins for 128,784€ 2nd Undici (6g Kaiser Soze-Jubeth-Corot), J-M Bazire up for trainer Nicolas Roussel, 6.8/1 3rd Berry's Boy (6g Love You-Realy Furniture-Incredible Crafts), Pierre Vercruysse driving for trainer Jan-F Van Dooyeweerd (Holland) by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com

Is the grand mare of French Trotting back? Today she was as Roxane Griff stormed home for Eric Raffin to capture the classic Prix de Cornulier (Gr. I UET Masters Series, 700,000 euro purse, 2700 meters) in a sharp 1.12.3kr, the second fastest time in the history of the race that began in 1931. Roxane Griff was an upset winner at odds of 10-1. Raffin had the chestnut nine year-old daughter of Tenor de Baune away alertly and settled along the pylons where during most of the journey she was fourth on the inner and seventh overall. Ulysse set a torrid pace and defended a challenge by last year's winner Singalo but was unable to match favorite Tiego d'Etang and C-J Bigeon into the long stretch. Raffin eased to the outside with Roxane Griff and followed live cover briefly before driving past Tiego d'Etang for a comfortable score. Saphir de Morge was third at 59/1. Singalo faded to ninth, behind Save The Quick (sixth) and Ulysse (eighth). Roxanne Griff is trained by Sebastien Guarato for Ecurie Griff. She posted her 16th career win in 89 starts and increased life earnings to 2,023,118 euro (over US$2.73 million). She had raced consistently in 2013 but not to her form of 2011-2012. Today's sharp finishing triumph was a reminder of Roxane Griff at her best. Can she show that form next week? Only two Prix de Cornulier winners of the past came back to win the Prix d'Amerique (Bellino II and Jag de Bellouet) but in a wide open 2014 anything can happen. Don't count her out. January 19, 2014 Paris-Vincennes, Prix de Cornulier, Gr. I UET Masters Series, 700,000 euro purse, 2700 meters, 17 starters 1.12.3kr (second fastest time in race history behind Singalo's 1.12kr) Fractions: 1.11kr at 1500, 1.11.5kr at 1000, 1.12.1kr at 500, 1.12.3 at finish 1st Roxane Griff (9f Tenor de Baune-Julia Mesloise-Sancho Panca), Eric Raffin up for trainer Sebastien Guarato and owner Yves Bertrand's Ecurie Griff, 10/1 odds, her 16th career victory in 89 starts, now for career earnings of 2,023,118 euro (US$2,738,432) 2nd Tiego d'Etang (7m Chaillot-Haroiene-Vroum d'Or), C-J Bigeon up at favorite odds 2.7/1 3rd Saphir de Morge (8m Guenor-Folie de Morge-Roc), Yohan Lebourgeois up at 59/1 4th Taiga du Rib (7m Nice Love-Galinette Cendree-Quiton du Coral), Matthieu Abrivard up at 33/1 5th Twist des Caillons (7f Jam Pridem-Heyra des Caillons-Tout Bon), J.L.C. Dersoir aboard at 19/1 Replay link follows: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ldww3VDDu-k A large crowd was on hand at Paris-Vincennes on this sunny beautiful winter's day. by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com     

Nathalie Henry changed her tactics with Vision Intense, the talented daughter of Prodigious, as she positioned her near the front from the outset. Following the leader into the long Paris-Vincennes stretch, Henry found room along the pylons and rallied through for a convincing win in 1.12.9kr over the 2175 meter distance, the winner's 10th career win with increased earnings to over 616,000 euro. The Gr. II Prix Leon Tacquet, for a 120,000 euro purse, is viewed by analysts as an important forerunner to the rich Prix de Cornulier held a week before the Prix d'Amerique. Philippe Moulin conditions Vision Intense for Ecurie Victoria Dreams. Vaillant Cash raced well for Camille Levesque to be second. 1/4/14 Vincennes - Prix Leon Tacquet, Gr. II monte, 2175 meters, 120,000 euro purse  1.12.9kr Fractional times: 1.12.1kr at 1500, 1.13kr at 1000, 1.13.6kr at 500, 1.12.9kr finish 1st  Vision Intense (5f Prodigious-Intense Action-Cezio Josselyn), Mlle. Nathalie Henry up for Philippe Moulin training for Ecurie Victoria Dreams, her 10 career win for 616,250 euro earnings, 0.8/1 favorite 2nd  Vaillant Cash (5m Offshore Dream-Kara du Redon-Ultra Ducal), Camille Levesque aboard, 6/1 odds 3rd  Valdice de Mars (5f Lynx de Bellouet-Tiphanie-Beausujour II), Yohan Lebourgeois up for trainer/owner Lois Groussard, 21/1 odds 4th  Valse Castelets (5f Memphis du Rib-Elide-Florestan), J,L.C. Dersoir up for Joel Hallais and Ecurie Rib, 4/1 odds Akim du Cap Vert scored in the co-featured Prix de Tonnac-Villeneuve, a Gr. II event worth 120,000 euro purse over 2175 meters. The four year-old son of First de Retz was piloted by trainer/owner Franck Anne to the 1.13kr score, his sixth lifetime now for earnings of over 493,000 euro. Axelle Dark rallied along the pylons to capture second as Jos. Verbeeck drove the Philippe Allaire trained daughter of Ready Cash. The Allaire trained Artiste de Jourdes was a solid third at 64/1 for reinsman Pierre Vercruysse. 1/4/14 Vincennes - Prix de Tonnac-Villeneuve, Gr. II, 120,000 euro purse, 2175 meters, 10 starters 1.13kr (race time 2:38.85) 1st  Akim du Cap Vert (4m First de Retz-Prima du Cap Vert-Cezio Josselyn), Franck Anne trainer, driver, own er, 1.6/1 odds, 6th lifetime win for earnings 493,530 euro 2nd Axelle Dark (4f Ready Cash-Queen des Charmes-Look de Star), Jos. Verbeeck up for trainer Philippe Allaire, 4/1 odds 3rd  Artiste de Jourdes (4m Prodigious-Memoru de Jourdes-Vikings Way), Pierre Vercruysse aboard for Philippe Allaire, 64/1 odds 4th Ah Quel Micha (4m Rocklyn-Oceane du Phare-Vroum d'Or), Julien Dubois up for Philippe Moulin and Ecurie Victoria Dreams Today's Quinte + race of the day was also at Paris-Vincennes and the six year-old Take, a son of Carpe Diem, scored for Franck Nivard in a driving finish. Off at 5/1 the winner is trained by Fabrice Souloy and was timed in 1.12.8kr over the 2100 meter autostart distance. The holders of exact order two euro tickets took home 6,480 euro. The day's jackpot was 1.4 million euro. 1/4/13 Vincennes - Prix de Breteuil, Quinte+, 52,000 euro purse, 2100 meters autostart, 16 starters  1.12.8kr 1st Take (7m Carpe Diem-Koncole-And Arifant), Franck Nivard up for Fabrice Souloy training for Hadis Coatings BV, 5/1 odds, ninth career win for euro earnings 234,100 2nd  Toreador (7g Fleuron Perrine-Jubellone-Jet du Vivier), Francois-Pierre Bossuet up, 2.8/1 favorite 3rd Tartane Vrie (7f Ni Ho Ped d'Ombree-Ancre de Vrie-Firstly), owner/trainer/driver Louis Baudron at 9/1 by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com   

Texas Charm (second choice in wagering, son of Cygnus d'Odyssee) rallied to win today's third "B" leading to January 26th Prix d'Amerique. Julien Dubois expertly handled the winner for Ecurie Victoria Dreams and trainer Philippe Moulin. Triode de Felliere was a solid second for Anthony Barrier driving for J-P Marmion owner/trainer. Favored Ready Cash was third after a two-hole trip behind pacesetter Timoko (Jos. Verbeeck up) who faded to ninth after a very fast pace (race time 1.10kr, mile rate 1:52.63) in which he parked Vanika du Ruel and Franck Anne. Ready Cash had no excuse and was unable to close on the leaders in the late going and held off fourth place finisher Tiego d'Etang. Timoko took the field to the first 600 meters in a mile rated time of 1:45.55 and held the pace to 1:49.25 with 1000 meters to go in the 2100 meter autostart contest (1-5/16 miles). Race summary follows showing the top 10 order of finish. Vincennes - Prix de Bourgogne, 120,000 euro purse, 2100 meters autostart, Gr. II International UET Masters Series, 17 starters, Quinte+ 1.10kr (mile rate 1:52.63, race time 2:27.10) Fractional times: 1.05.6kr at 1500; 1.07.8kr at 1000; 1.09.7kr at 500 meter to go post 1st Texas Charm (6m Cygnus d'Odyssee-Kamela Charm-Coktail Jet), Julien Dubois up for Ecurie Victoria Dreams and trainer Philippe Moulin, odds 2.1/1 2nd  Triode de Felliere (6f Derby du Gite-Linea de Vandel-Cezio Josselyn), Anthony Barrier up for J-P Marmion 3rd Ready Cash (8m Indy de Vive-Kidea-Extreme Dream), Franck Nivard aboard for owner Philippe Allaire, Thierry Duvaldestin trainer 4th Tiego d'Etang (6m Chaillot-Herolene-Vroum d'Or), Ch. J. Bigeon up for trainer Christian Bigeon 5th Roxane Griff (8f Tenor de Baune-Julia Mesloise-Sancho Panca), Eric Raffin driving for trainer Sebastien Guarato 6th Marielles (7f Kick Tail-Egida Play-Waikiki Beach), Matthieu Abrivard up for trainer Fabrice Souloy 7th The Best Madrik (6m Coktail Jet-Lady Madrik-Biesolo), Jean-Etienne Dubois aboard 8th Up And Quick (5f Buvetier d'Aunou- Fichtre-Quiton du Coral), J-M Bazire up for trainer Franck Leblanc 9th Timoko (6m Imoko-Kiss Me Coulonces -And Arifant), Jos Verbeeck driving for Richard Westerink owner/trainer 10th  Univers de Pan (5m Kenya du Pont-Gypsilore-Pan de la Vaudere), Philippe Daugeard driver/trainer by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com   

Uhlan du Val (5m Islero de Bellouet-Indiana Beautiful-Beautiful Somolli) was an easy 10/1 upset winner of the first “B” leading to the 2014 Prix d’Amerique in January. He scored in 1.12.9kr in a race in which the pace quickened with each 500 meter clocking. Time at the 1500 meter mark was 1.14.2kr. This Gr. II International UET Masters Series contest, over 2700 meters for 120,000 euro purse, may signal a changing of the guard (albeit Ready Cash and other international stars were not starters) as veterans Roxanne Griff, Quinoa du Gers and Reve de Beylev ended fifth, sixth and seventh in the 13 horse field (other well-known players Quoumba du Guez, Singalo, Main Wise As, Vanika du Ruel and  early leader Kadett CD were either back in the pack or disqualified). The long-striding, great-gaited winner scored for the sixth time in his career, good for over 560,000 euros. Cedric Megissier drove Uhlan du Val for owner J-P Megissier. Up And Quick (5m Buvetier d’Aunou-Fichtre-Quiton du Coral) raced well again to be second for Franck Nivard and trainer Franck Leblanc. Favorite Tiego d’Etang (6m Chaillot-Harolene-Vroum d’Or) was third for Christian Bigeon with Treskool du Caux (6m Kool du Caux-Intervista-Off Gy) fourth with Tony LeBeller aboard. The Quinte+ race of the day (1.2 million euro jackpot) was the Prix de Cosse-Le-Vivien (2100 meters autostart, 16 starters, 72,000 euro purse) with the winner being the Denmark registered New Line (8g King Conch-Pa’En Igen Frokjaer-Pay Dirt) with Pierre Levesque catch-driving for trainer Ake Svanstedt. He scored in 1.12kr to record his 17th career win good for 311,000 euros banked. Off at 3/1, the winner (who reminds this writer of Pay Dirt) defeated Tornade du Digeon (6f Jag de Bellouet-Herlane du Terme-Kimberland) and reinsman J-M Bazire with Sweden’s Ed You (6g Love You-Lancia Brick-Super Arnie) third for Robert Bergh and owner Stall Sedin HB. by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com  

Today (Thursday)  the prestigious Winter Meet began at Hippodrome Paris-Vincennes and runs through March 3, 2014. A host to France and international trotting events highlight the program including the Four B’s that produce qualification for the Prix d’Amerique, the monte classic Prix de Cornulier plus the Criterium Continental and Prix Tenor de Baune. The dates of major races are shown below: Nov. 16 – Prix de Bretagne Dec. 1- Grand National du Trot (GNT) Final Dec. 7 – Prix de Bourbonnais Dec. 8 – Criterium 3 Ans Dec. 22 – Criterium Continental Jan. 1 – Prix de Bourgogne Jan. 5 – Prix du Calvados Jan. 12 – Prix Tenor de Baune Jan. 15 –Prix de Belgique Jan. 19 – Prix de Cornulier Jan. 16 – Prix d’Amerique Feb. 2 – Prix de L’lle dr France and Prix de la Marne Feb. 9 – Prix de France and Prix des Centauran Feb. 16 – Criterium des Jeunes Feb. 23 – Prix de Paris Mar 3 – Prix de L’Union European and Prix de Selection Today’s racing action was a fitting start to the Winter Meet, as it showcased the Gr. II monte Prix Reynolds over 2175 meters for a 120,000 euro purse. The great international sulky star mare Roxane Griff (8f Tenor de Baune-Julia Mesloise) made a sweeping move around the final bend and scored easily,  drawing clear to win in 1.11.3kr albeit she drifted wide toward the stands in the late stages. Eric Raffin rode the winner, defeating Quarry Bay (9f Cygnus d’Odyssee-Barcaroile) and Camille Levesque. Sakura Jiel (7f Buvetier d’Aunou-Milady Jiel) was third with Guillaume Martin aboard. The co-feature was the Gr. III Prix des Cevennes (European) for 110,000 euro over the 2700 meter grande piste.  Contenders Soleil du Fosse and the Robert Bergh handles Kadett CD made disqualifying miscues opening the way for a win by the Christian Bigeon trained and driven Tiego d’Etang (6m Chaillo-Harolene-Vroum d’Or) in 1.13.7kr. He defeated the SWE invader Sanity(7g Love You-Flash Light-Mack Lobell), handled by Franck Ouvrie for Stall Sanity and trainer Malin Lofgren, and the classy FR mare Santa Rosa France (7f Kaisy Dream-Heloise France-Blue Dream) with Wm. Bigeon up. The other important monte event on the card was the Prix de Bellerive over 2700 meters and for a purse of 72,000 euro. Air de Marne (3g Corot-Hydre de Marne) scored narrowly for Alexandre Abrivard in 1.17.1kr over Aquarelle de Fael for Franck Nivard with Al Capone Jet taking third for Damien Bonne. Monte action plays a significant role during the Winter Meet, culminating in the  700,000 euro Prix de Cornulier one week before the Prix d’Amerique. by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com  

Legendary Belgium driver Jos Verbeeck returned home briefly to partner Sweden’s Deuxieme Picsous (6h In Love With You) to victory in the international group two Grand Prix Ville de Waragem (2,350 metres) yesterday. The home-bred pride of Jagesro based owner-trainer Johan Lejon defeated a large field of 18 trotters which included his neighbour Conrad Lugauer the Swedish-based German, with his well performed German-bred and owned Bagley on the right handed at Waregem track, Belgium. On the relatively short 2,350-metre course there was plenty of initial jostling to get to the front, and it was local trainer Pascal Godey’s sprinter Queyras Apple (Fighter Horse) driven by Philippe Masschaele who prevailed to take the lead despite his 20-metre handicap. But Deuxième Picsous attacked mid race and took command when sent forward by by Jos Verbeeck. It was then a procession as the brilliant Belgian dictated terms and he won easily from Queyras Apple and tough ampaigner Silver Pierji (7h Jag de Bellouet) who had trailed him for most of the journey. A winner of the prestigious E3 final at 3YO and a narrow second in the Swedish Trav Derby at 4, Deuxième Picsous like many Franco-Americans has come into his own at maturity as a six-year-old this season. It was the the stallion son of In Love With You’s second UET Masters series win of the season having won the Mälarpriset V75 Guldivision final at Ekilstuna on June 29 where he brilliantly defeated Eliltoppet winner Nahar with a scintilating burst down the rail. He also finished 2nd to Amour d’Occagnes in the Matadoren in Germany and 3rd behind Timoko in the Grand Prix de Mons in Belgium in other Masters series races and the win puts him on the cusp of a start in the final on September 17 with 1000 points, equal 18th with Panne de Moteur who was coincidentally a winner on Saturday. Deuxieme Picsous has now also topped the 5 million SEK mark (€570,000) for his owners Johan Lejon and Marie Stenberg. GRAND PRIX DE LA VILLE DE WAREGEM Waregem 2350m 4+ €60,000 1 Deuxieme Picsous (6 h In Love With You - Carmela Strömline) Dr: Jos Verbeeck Tr: Johan Lejon 1.15,0a €25,000 2 Queyras Apple (9h Fighter Horse-Joyeuse Fontenelle) Dr: Philippe Masschaele Tr: Pascal Godey 1.15,3a €12,500 3 Silver Pierji (7 h Jag de Bellouet -Intaille) Dr: Pierre Vercruysse Tr: Ronny Kuiper 1.15,3a €6,000 4 Une de Bannes (5m Vroum d'Or-Jeune de Bannes) Dr: Rik Depuydt Tr: Carine de Soete 1.16,0a €4,000 5 Klondike B.B. (7h Dream Vacation -Super Sleek) Dr: Christophe Martens Tr: Vincent Martens 1.16,1a €2,500 Dave Sanders

In addition to today at Aby (Olympiatravet Final) and Enghien (Prix de l'Atlantique), where Maharajah and Timoko posted impressive victories, there was other interesting harness racing today and over the past few days.

Beckman (6g Turbo Sund-Nina Palema-Alf Palema) with harness racing trainer/driver Ake Svanstedt up, held off a determined Raja Mirchi (6h Viking Kronos-Dame Lavec-Quito de Talonay) to win V-75 Gold Olympiatravet Last Chance event at Farjestad and with it secured the last entry to the April 20 Olympic Trot at Aby.

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